Swan freed from ice
Station Lorain, Ohio
Coast Guard Station Lorain rescued a black swan that was stuck in the ice near the Black River Railroad Bridge. The black swan was recovered by Coast Guard personnel and transferred to the Lake Erie Nature and Science Center in Bay Village, Ohio. Station Lorain was notified by the Black River Railroad Bridge operator that a duck was stuck in the river near the bridge.
Four station personnel, trained in ice rescue techniques and dressed in rescue clothing and gear, entered the water. They broke through the 1.5-inch-thick ice with their hands to free the black swan. The freed swan limped to the shoreline where it was recovered by station personnel and wrapped in a blanket to keep warm. Station personnel transported the injured swan to the Lake Erie Nature and Science Center for care. The officer-in-charge of Station Lorain says his crew responded because their commitment to being “guardians” would not allow them to sit idle while this swan froze to death in the ice. (Jan. 13)
Man swims after boat, dogs
Station Fire Island, N.Y.
A man and his two dogs were saved after they were separated by strong winds and a drifting boat near Fire Island, N.Y. The Coast Guard received a mayday call from a man reporting he was stranded on Captree Island while his boat, which held his two dogs, was drifting away from him. Coast Guard Station Fire Island launched a rescue boat crew and the Suffolk County Police Department sent a rescue helicopter and boat crew shortly after hearing the distress call.
The man told the Coast Guard he was attempting to launch his boat, which contained his two dogs, and head back to land. The weather caused the boat to slip away from him as he pushed off the island. He reportedly swam after it, but because of strong winds and cold waters, he was unable to catch up. The rescue boat crew from Station Fire Island arrived and brought the man to safety. At the same time, Station Fire Island sent rescue patrols out to Robert Moses Beach to search for the missing boat, which was found 15 minutes later. The Coast Guard also found the two dogs still aboard and safely reunited them with their owner. The winds on scene were 32 to 38 mph. (Dec. 31)
Disabled 100 miles out
Station Cape May, N.J.
The Coast Guard rescued three people aboard a disabled 72-foot fishing boat 100 miles off the coast of Cape May, N.J. The Coast Guard received a call from a crew member aboard the boat, home-ported in Freeport, N.Y., reporting engine failure because of faulty batteries. The crew confirmed the boat was not in distress and was equipped with a life raft and an emergency position indicating radio beacon. The crew of Coast Guard Cutter Mako, home-ported in Cape May, arrived on scene with replacement batteries. The crew replaced the batteries and were unable to restart the boat because of engine failure. The crew of the cutter was towing the fishing boat and crew to Cape May. The owner and operator of the boat contacted commercial assistance for relief of the tow once they arrived near Cape May. (Jan. 8)
This article originally appeared in the April 2009 issue.
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